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Thread: A year in South Beach

  1. #41
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    Default Re: A year in South Beach

    Congrats again Jess! As someone who hitting 7 years, and has moved from the beach to off-the-beach, I know the mission it can be to deal with Landlords, sobe life, etc. but like Matt said, once you hit two years, you know if you will make it in Miami or not. I think so many people move down for the glitz and glam, but don't realize that there's more than parties in South Beach, and people are not as nice here as they would be in most people's home towns.

  2. #42
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    Default Re: A year in South Beach

    Quote Originally Posted by Jess View Post
    Today is my Miami birthday. I have been here one year and I love it

    I know lots of people find these forums from searching about moving to Miami. That's how I found this article:

    How I Moved to South Beach: Budget-Minded Tips from A New Resident - Miami Beach 411

    and the rest as they say is history!


    So here are a few things I have learned in a year about living in South Beach, good and bad. Just a few observations, and everyone has different experiences of course... And they are...


    Doug's article I posted above was beyond helpful. I don't honestly think you can move here without coming here first.

    Miami Time. You can't fight it. When repairmen say 8am, they mean 11am. When friends say meet for dinner at 8pm, they mean 9:30 if you're lucky. Coming from the UK, this is still a struggle for me, but I'm getting better. I'm still the first one at a meet up though.

    I read once Miami is the City you f***. So true. I love this little stretch of beach, but it can be mayhem and do not expect some tourists to treat your home well. Living in the quieter section of the beach helps.

    Following on from that though, Miami Beach is the best place to live if you are young. If you are bored and decide to go out late, no matter. There is always something happening somewhere!

    If you live on the beach, you don't need a car. A topic that is up for debate a LOT on this site. I'm sure if I lived downtown or in Coral Gables I would want one. But I get off the beach all the time and I do it on public transport. (Plus I'm safer on the bus. People cannot drive here!!!)

    Living by a beach is heaven, pure and simple. If your daydream is moving to Miami cos of the sunshine and beach, well who cares? I could think of no better reason to move here, seriously.
    No offense, but you seem very young ... Give yourself a few years, 30s then 40s. I am 100% Floridian and nobody I grew up with ever mentioned living in Miami, much less on Miami Beach. But for a young Dude from the UK, I can see why you think Miami is a paradise. For me, it's a decent location for quick trips to Brazil ... The true Paradise.

    If you're happy, I am happy and welcome to the US !!!
    Last edited by Jon Walters; 12-16-2010 at 12:52 AM.

  3. #43
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    Default Re: A year in South Beach

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Walters View Post
    No offense, but you seem very young ... Give yourself a few years, 30s then 40s. I am 100% Floridian and nobody I grew up with ever mentioned living in Miami, much less on Miami Beach. But for a young Dude from the UK, I can see why you think Miami is a paradise. For me, it's a decent location for quick trips to Brazil ... The true Paradise.

    If you're happy, I am happy and welcome to the US !!!
    I am young South Beach is perfect for me right now.

    Thank you Jon, but I just wanted to point out also, Jess is short for Jessica...I'm a girl

  4. #44
    Editor Matt Meltzer's Avatar
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    I've seen "City of God." Hard to believe anyone would refer to THAT place as Paradise.

    And the thing in the Beach, John, is that nobody really ever asks anyone's age. Or what they do for a living. Point being I would agree Jess is a young person, but that's more a function of attitude than birthdate. My point being, some people born in the 70s still think life in Miami Beach is better than it would be in a more normal environment. Not sure I'm one of them, necessarily, but South Beach is full of them.

  5. #45
    Member Maria de los Angeles's Avatar
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    You know Jess, I don't even know how old you are! How funny ... all I know is that you're gorgeous, fun and smart. That's all I see

  6. #46
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    Wow, what compliments! Thank you, now I'm blushing

  7. #47
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    Default It's my 3rd Miami Birthday!

    Well, here it is... my 3rd birthday here in South Beach. Actually the exact date is Thursday but I will be eating a whole pumpkin pie to myself that day, so I won't have time to write

    I just re read my posts from year one and then year two... Interesting reading. That first year was tough for me, adjusting to life this side of the pond. And then the second year's post just absolutely radiates happiness. It was nice to re read

    And here I am, 3 years on. They say things happen in 3's and for this year I have to agree...

    I am in my 3rd apartment. After two cheating landlords I gave up on Art Deco buildings. They may be cute but it isn't fun when you are foreclosed on and having your money stolen. I also got sick of living in a building with the worst neighbors of my life. Dealing with dogs barking till 5am cos their mom is out partying in South Beach while living off unemployment and not paying her rent gets old fast. So I moved. But my 3rd apartment is a classic case of 3rd time lucky, and all is good.

    3 hospital stays at Mount Sinai and I now understand the USA healthcare system. I did not like what I found. Healthcare is a right not a privilege. And the next American that starts preaching to me about the UK's NHS? Well, Mount Sinai at one point diagnosed me with prostate cancer (Which I don't have). Note to American doctors: Girls do NOT have prostates.

    Also, I am on my 3rd betta fish Bob died so we bought Bob Junior. However, Bob Junior did not like me leaving for a trip to England for two weeks and died the night I returned. So I am on my 3rd fishie, and the new one is very cute.

    But on a more cheerful note, I am still happily living in SoBe. The year flew by, with a more peaceful March thank goodness, I don't think I'd have survived a 3 day Ultra. I love my job here at 411, getting to walk 'backstage' as I call it round the website, and helping all the thousands of people that come here for advice. I still ride my beach cruiser everywhere and do not own a car. Although, I do wish the city would fix the roads here as my teeth are jarred out of my head usually on long bike rides around the beach.

    I love living here and will always find new things to do. This year I finally went bowling at Lucky Strike, went to cooking classes at Williams Sonoma and spent more time traveling. I partied like a lunatic for my first 18 months living here so now I have more balance. Although that Thursday night VIP at Amnesia had me there like a shot

    But best of all are the amazing friends I have made here. I moved here knowing no one and now I have a circle of friends I will hopefully keep forever. I had an awesome summer with Gus and Michelle and love them dearly. (No one else would have got me hiking up a waterfall! And now Mango's are my favorite fruit haha.) I live next door to my best friend. And my Mexican boy is one of the best things to ever happen to me. So three years on and I'm still here, but more importantly I am as happy as ever

    Wonder how the 4th year will treat me?

  8. #48
    Senior Member Doug's Avatar
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    Default Re: A year in South Beach

    Wow, Jess, you've done a lot of living since you arrived! I can't believe that Mount Sinai diagnosed you as having prostate cancer! I also had some bad experiences taking Dave there. They weren't exactly incompetent, but just came across as very uncaring and callous. If we moved back, I think I would take him to Jackson Memorial instead. Where was the waterfall you hiked? Sounds like fun!

  9. #49
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    Default Re: A year in South Beach

    Ive been here since Feb 28 2010 ....and so far love it. Not to mention that Im working with the coolest bunch of folks, and the transition has been great, especially joining forum, getting advice and tips for everyone here.

    Coral Gables is an awesome place to live, and yes the traffic can be a pain, but Ive learned some quicker less stressful routes back and forth from my job in Kendall. Im hoping to meet more friends, and, enjoy the experience!

    I so do not know spanish well....and incidentally going to take an online class....Miami Dade offers some continuing educational spanish courses online for those that work alot...in various levels from beginners (me...lol)....to advance, there is another online option I am considering as well and will share shortly.

    Thank you Miami411, for up to date, realistic, helpful, advice here!

  10. #50
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    Default Re: A year in South Beach

    Happy 3rd Miami Bday Jess!, you deserve all the happiness in the world! I think year 4 is going to be awesome too.You haven't tried paddle boarding yet, save that for when I visit again!

  11. #51
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    Default Re: A year in South Beach

    YES....Happy 3rd Bday....Jess!

  12. #52
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    Default Re: A year in South Beach

    Doug, we hiked up a waterfall in Yosemite Park in California. It was a beautiful day and gave me many special memories. I moved to America to experience living here, and that was one hell of an experience!

    Christy, yes we will have to go paddle boarding. Now I live here properly I never go to the beach, so that will give me an excuse to go

    This week always makes me reflect on moving here. It was the week of Thanksgiving when I arrived, a total English girl who had no idea what it was all about. I spent my first Thanksgiving on the beach, oblivious to it all.

  13. #53
    Member Maria de los Angeles's Avatar
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    Default Re: A year in South Beach

    Congratulations Jess! I'm so happy I get to work with you. You've accomplished a lot in the 3 years and I'm sure it's only going to get better.

  14. #54
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    Default Re: A year in South Beach

    How did this happen?!?!?! I have been here FOUR YEARS!!! I am, quite frankly, shocked

    I moved to Miami to try it for a year. I arrived and immediately said, I want to go home in 6 months, this is all too much. But nope, I stuck it out and here I am, 4 yrs later.

    I moved here on the Monday of Thanksgiving week, so it technically it is 4 years today, even though it is not the actual date. And what has changed this year? After all, the years can start to blend when it is not so new. But I have had yet another fun filled 12 months. I am now a girl who chases waves, getting up at 6am if there is a chance of some surf on South Beach. I have become a good paddle boarder. I get up early each morning to run or practice yoga. All of these active, outdoor pursuits are only made possible by living in the warmth and sunshine of Miami. I appreciate living here every single day.

    I read recently on a blog, Miami is a very sunny place with very shady people. This is SO TRUE. This year I was again scammed by dishonest people on South Beach. You would think after 4 years I would have learned my lesson. Even after 4 years I am still amazed at the audacity of people working on the beach, and pity tourists who come across their path. South Beach is a ruthless place to be in. So it is not all sunshine and cocktails living here.

    I did even more classic American things this year which is always fun; I drove a pick up truck, went to a country music concert, attended a beer fest (Thank you Tap 42 and American Social in Fort Lauderdale for providing gluten free beer!!!), surfed in Cali (not technically Miami, but hey, even people in Miami need vacation), and I got to vote in the Presidential election, not as an overseas voter as I have done in the past but at a polling place in Miami-Dade. It was a good year for becoming more American ... but I will always feel British too.

    And only last week, when I was sitting down to dinner with Gus and Michelle, the owners of Miami Tour Company and this website, I looked at them both and realized how much they had changed my life. I moved here using the advice from MiamiBeach411, and am still living here today thanks to my job working with them. This site is many things to many people, but for me, it is always the place that helped me move to and stay in Miami...

  15. #55
    Editor Matt Meltzer's Avatar
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    Default Re: A year in South Beach

    Congratualtions. You've doubled the over/under. At which point you've pretty much realized the good outweighs the bad.

  16. #56
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    Default Re: A year in South Beach

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Meltzer View Post
    I've seen "City of God." Hard to believe anyone would refer to THAT place as Paradise.
    For whatever it's worth, the day I spent in the favela was the most rewarding part of my stay.


    Nice accomplishment Jess. Your gut is stronger than mine.

  17. #57
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    Default Re: A year in South Beach

    Nice update, thanks. The quote "a sunny place for shady people" is originally from a book by Somerset Maugham, talking about his experiences in the French Riviera during World War II.
    Matt Meltzer likes this.

  18. #58
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    Default Re: A year in South Beach

    That's good to know. The blog definitely did not pretend it was their own quote. But that saying certainly does suit Miami also.

  19. #59
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    Default Re: A year in South Beach

    I guess I missed my Miami birthday last year lol.

    Well, it's November 24. And a Monday, which was the day I moved 6 years ago. Happy Miami Birthday to me.

    6 years. I'm actually kinda sad about it. I came for one year, but ended up falling in love with Miami, the beaches, the weather, a boy, this website, my job, my friends, my lifestyle. I don't sound so British now either, most people think I'm Australian.

    Do I love Miami? Yes.

    Do I miss the UK. Yes

    Am I glad I moved? Yes. But in a bittersweet way.

    Next year it will be 7 years, and Meltzer owes me a gold watch or something. I love giving advice on this website, but for anyone thinking of moving, take it from someone who knows... save money, don't assume it's all sunshine, find GOOD people to have as friends, and don't drink the Miami kook-aid all the time, or you'll end up with a DUI, broke, or in jail.

    Big love to Gus, Michelle, Matt, Christy and Joe... all friends I made on this site, and all of you guys have changed my life in some way. xox
    Matt Meltzer and Anders like this.

  20. #60
    Editor Matt Meltzer's Avatar
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    Default Re: A year in South Beach

    Hahaha.....if you're not in Central Florida, sure Jess.
    Jess likes this.

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